University Human Resources | » Affirmative Action Guidance (2023)

As supervisors, human resources professionals, diversity and inclusion professionals, Equity Officers, Diversity Officers, and search committee members, we ask you to be aware of UMD’s commitment to affirmative action and help us meet our goals. Please review this section in its entirety and contact UMD’s Affirmative Action Officer, Sarah Babineau, at if you have any questions.

Historical Overview


Civil Rights Act – Title VII

No discrimination in employment against protected classes.



Executive Order 11246 – Affirmative Action

Federal contractors must be proactive in attracting, hiring, and advancing the employment of women and racial/ethnic minorities.

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Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act

Affirmative action expanded to include people with disabilities.


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Vietnam Era Veterans Readjustment Assistance Act

Affirmative action expanded to include protected veterans.



Why does UMD complete annual AAPs?

  • UMD has federal contracts subject to Executive Order 11246 of 1965, Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and the Vietnam Era Veterans Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974.
  • These federal contracts help UMD in its mission of teaching, research, and public service by funding student financial aid and research.
  • UMD uses the data and analytics from the AAPs to inform our diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts.
  • Diversity, equity, and inclusion activities are an integral part of the AAP narratives in which we demonstrate and document our efforts towards our goals each year.

What elements are required for federally compliant AAPs?

  • Three categories make up the AAPs for federal contractors, covering:
    • Women and racial/ethnic minorities (as defined by the EEOC),
    • Protected veterans,
    • Individuals with disabilities (IwD).
  • The regulations can be found in 41 CFR Chapter 60.

What government agency oversees affirmative action?

  • The Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contractor Compliance (OFCCP) is responsible for assuring that federal contractors comply with their obligations.

What are the required posters that departments should post in each building?

  • Each building should have the federally required compliance posters easily visible in areas of high employee and/or applicant traffic. Break rooms, time clocks, and other areas where employees and visitors might gather are best.
  • The federal AAP posters are available for download for free at UHR’s Employment and Labor posters page.
  • Departments that wish to purchase posters can reach out to the UHR Employment Compliance team for resources on where to order posters.
  • Other compliance posters may be required depending on your functional area.

What are the record-keeping requirements and what records do they apply to?

  • UMD must keep all employment-related records for at least 3 years.
  • These include self-identification records, documents related to applications, hiring, interviews, promotions, reclasses, disciplinary action, terminations, justification for compensation, or other employment action records.
  • Accurate disposition reasons for applicants, hires, promotions, and terminations in the applicant tracking and human capital management systems are critical.
  • Other laws may apply that require us to keep records longer.

What else should my department do?

  • Read through this section to understand all requirements for personnel involved in the hiring, promotion, training, disciplinary, termination, and related processes.
  • Post all competitive appointments through eTerp. Do not accept emailed or paper applications.
  • Provide reasonable accommodations to any applicant who indicates that they need help applying for a job because of a disability.
  • Use the most accurate disposition reasons for all personnel actions.
  • Save all documentation related to employment actions for 3 years.

AAP Structure

What kind of information is included in an AAP?

  • AAPs use 12 months of employment data and self-identified demographics organized into analytical and narrative sections.
  • Analytical sections focus on specific employment actions that took place during the year.
  • Narrative sections may describe the results and meaning UMD makes of the analytical sections, and may also include policies or actions UMD engaged in to meet its goals.

How are UMD’s AAPs structured?

  • Each job title is assigned a SOC code (defined by the Bureau of Labor Statistics) and an AAP Job Group based on the essential functions and advancement opportunities associated with the job.
  • Each AAP Job Group falls into an EEO-1 category defined by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
  • Most of the analytical sections of the AAPs are organized by the AAP Job Group.

Are student employees or Graduate Assistants reported in the AAPs?

  • Student employees and Graduate Assistants are not reported in the AAPs.
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AAP Goals

What is an AAP goal?

  • Goals for women and racial and ethnic minorities (as defined by the EEOC) come from the Comparison of Incumbency to Estimated Availability sections of the AAPs.
  • Goals for people with disabilities are set by OFCCP.
  • Goals are not quotas or rigid targets that must be met.
  • Goals do not allow for “set-asides” for specific groups, nor are they a ceiling or a floor for the employment of particular groups.
  • Goals serve as objectives or targets reasonably attainable through applying every good faith effort to make all aspects of the entire affirmative action program work.
  • Goals are used to measure progress toward achieving equal employment opportunity, diversity, equity, and inclusion.

How does UMD calculate the availability of people who could be qualified for our jobs?

  • UMD analyzes the availability of people who self-identify as women, racial or ethnic minorities are qualified to perform the essential functions of the positions in each AAP Job Group, and live in a reasonable recruitment area.
  • Availability for tenured and tenure-track faculty is calculated using the National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics Survey of Earned Doctorates by discipline and year of degree conference.
  • Availability for professional track faculty, other faculty, and staff is calculated using U.S. Census data.

How does UMD decide which AAP Job Groups should have a goal?

  • Once the Availability Analysis is completed, it is compared to the self-id information from people in each AAP Job Group.
  • If the difference in the percent of employees in the AAP Job Group and the percent of people available is statistically significant, a goal equal to the availability percent is set.

How will I know if one of my positions is in an AAP Job Group with a goal?

  • In eTerp, there is an EEO Information section at the top of each posting.
  • Positions in an AAP Job Group with a goal are marked with a “Yes” in the Underutilized Job Group field.
  • The demographic(s) for which the goal is set is identified under the AAP Placement Goal field.
  • Goals can be set for Women, Minorities, or Both.
  • Most AAP Job Groups have a goal for people with disabilities, so targeted outreach to people with disabilities should always be included in the search and selection plan.
University Human Resources | » Affirmative Action Guidance (1)

Who sets the goals in eTerp?

  • UHR’s Compensation and Classification department sets the goals for staff positions.
  • The Provost’s Office sets the goals for faculty positions.

How can I tell if an AAP Job Group should have a goal in eTerp?

  • If you have eTerp access to update the EEO Information field, there is a blue link to a spreadsheet labeled Affirmative Action Goals.
  • This spreadsheet is updated with new goals every time the AAPs are updated.
University Human Resources | » Affirmative Action Guidance (2)

What should I do if I see that a job I’m recruiting for has a goal?

  • When a position has a goal, targeted outreach to the demographic(s) with the goal must be conducted.
  • The position should be advertised in places where qualified candidates from the demographic(s) are likely to see it.
  • For example, if a position for an Engineer shows a goal for Women, a good place to advertise the open position might be IEEE Women in Engineering (WIE). For more ideas, contact your college or division’s Equity Officer.
  • Please be sure to upload all documentation of your targeted outreach into the eTerp search and selection plan section on the position. Please include:
    • Copies of the advertisement(s) (screenshots of the position posted on the website are okay).
    • Email chains with agencies about the open position.

What is the Equity Officer’s role for positions that have a goal?

  • The Equity Officer issues the charge to the search committee for qualified positions. They will remind the search committee that the position has a goal and to review this webpage and any other affirmative action information.
  • They also review the search and selection guidelines with the search committee.
  • The Equity Officer reviews final applicant pools before they are sent to the Hiring Official to ensure there is a diverse representation of candidates.

What is UHR’s role in advertising for positions that have a goal?

  • UHR sends open positions to the Maryland Workforce Exchange website regularly.
  • UHR’s Support Center acts as the Equity Officers for non-exempt positions.

Veterans Hiring Benchmark

What is a hiring benchmark for veterans?

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  • Instead of goals, OFCCP requires a hiring benchmark for veterans for the entire workforce.
  • This means that UMD aims for a certain percentage of all hires to be protected veterans each year.
  • UMD uses the benchmark set by OFCCP to measure its success in hiring veterans.

How is a hiring benchmark different from goals?

  • While goals are set by AAP Job Group, the hiring benchmark applies to all hires in the AAP year.
  • For example, if a goal for people with disabilities is 7%, once that job group has 7% or more people with disabilities, there is no longer a goal.
  • If the hiring benchmark for veterans is 7%, then UMD tries to make sure that 7% of the hires for that year are veterans.
  • The benchmark is renewed every year. Even if UMD had an active workforce of 50% protected veterans, it would still try to hire at least 7% veterans every year.

Targeted Outreach

What is targeted outreach?

  • If a position has a goal, targeted outreach means advertising the open position where qualified people from the demographic are likely to see the job.
  • For example, suppose a position for an Accountant has a goal for both minorities and women. In that case, targeted outreach could mean advertising the position with the National Association of Black Accountants, the Association of Latino Professionals in Finance and Accounting, and the Accounting and Financial Women’s Alliance.
  • A Google search including the type of position and the demographic you’re targeting will usually result in some options.
  • Work with your Equity Officer to brainstorm other available resources.

What are good resources for finding veterans?

What are good resources for finding people with disabilities?

  • Maryland’s Department of Rehabilitative Services (DORS) has a listing of the state’s Business Services Team members by county.
  • DORS offers customized training programs designed for specific areas of the job market.
  • DisabilityIn and EARN often have job fairs that connect employers and talented people with disabilities.

How does UHR help me advertise my open positions?

  • UHR regularly posts all open positions on the Maryland Workforce Exchange website.
  • UHR recommends Bayard, a resource that distributes open positions to commonly searched sources, for a fee. Places they advertise include:
    • The Washington Post
    • HigherEdJobs
    • The Chronicle of Higher Ed
    • Issues in Higher Education

How do I contact Bayard?

  • Fill out this online form to send your posting directly to Bayard.
  • Bayard will bill your department directly.

Is there specific language we can include in the job ad?

  • Advertisements for open positions that include images of people should be diverse.
  • The line “The University of Maryland, College Park is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer. Women, minorities, LGBTQ+, people with disabilities, and veterans are welcome!” should be included.
  • If space doesn’t permit, the ad should include, at minimum, this tag line: “EOE M/W/Disabled/Veteran”.

What if we are working with a search firm for the position?

  • Search firms should be made aware of UMD’s commitment to affirmative action by including language such as, “The University of Maryland, College Park is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer subject to Executive Order 11246, Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act and VEVRAA.”
  • If the job group for the position has a goal, the search firm should be made aware of the goal and the protected class for which it is set so they can conduct the targeted outreach on UMD’s behalf.
  • The search firm should send the documentation of its outreach efforts to UMD for its record-keeping requirements. This information should either be uploaded to the applicant tracking system or sent directly to the Affirmative Action Officer.

Adverse Impact Analysis

What is adverse impact analysis?

  • Adverse impact analysis is a test of fairness that ensures that none of UMD’s policies or procedures exclude applicants or employees from opportunities to join or advance in our workforce based on their self-id information.
  • UHR gathers 12 months of data on employment activities including hires, promotions, and terminations, and analyzes who was selected by gender, race, and ethnicity.
  • When the difference between selection ratios for a demographic is statistically significant, that activity, job group, and demographic is flagged with an indicator.
  • The indicator does not mean that discrimination has taken place. It means that a deeper review is needed.

What does an adverse impact indicator mean?

  • It means the difference in selection ratios for that activity, job group, and demographic is statistically significant. It is not evidence of discrimination.

What demographics are included in the analysis?

  • Adverse impact analysis compares the selection rates of the binary genders, male and female, Hispanic or Latinx ethnicity, and the following EEOC-prescribed races:
    • American Indian or Alaskan Native,
    • Asian,
    • Black or African American,
    • Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander,
    • Two or more races, and
    • White.

What employment actions are included in the analyses?

  • Adverse impact analysis compares the selection ratios by gender, race, and ethnicity in:
    • Hires;
    • Promotions, and;
    • Terminations.

What happens when there is an indicator of adverse impact?

  • When an indicator of adverse impact shows in an AAP Job Group, the data and documentation for employees affected by those actions are analyzed.
  • Information such as applicant disposition or termination reasons is reviewed to determine the reason for the indicator.
  • If the data files do not provide enough detail to explain the reason for the indicator, the department will be contacted and asked to provide records related to the activity.

What information is needed to analyze an adverse impact indicator?

  • Thorough documentation is critical. It can be difficult to remember the details of a decision more than a year after the action.
  • Using accurate applicant disposition reasons, saving documentation related to promotion or reclassification decisions, resignation letters, and interview notes go a long way to help departments ensure they can provide the requested information.


Is compensation included in affirmative action?

  • Yes. The non-discrimination policy says that UMD does not pay employees differently based on race, ethnicity, gender, disability, protected veteran status, or any other protected characteristic.
  • UMD is also required to post and abide by the Pay Transparency Non-Discrimination Provision, which states that UMD employees must be allowed to discuss their own compensation with no fear of retaliation.
  • It does not permit employees with access to compensation data to share or disclose the compensation of others.

What is the Maryland Equal Pay for Equal work law?

  • UMD is subject to the State of Maryland’s Equal Pay for Equal Work law which requires everyone involved in the hiring or promotion processes to be aware that UMD is not allowed to ask applicants about their salary history.
  • UMD should provide the most accurate hiring range for a position if an applicant asks.
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